Malawians remember pro-democracy hero Chakufwa Chihana: MP Mwenifumbo pays tribute as finished Aford fail to observe day

Malawians on Thursday were remembering  hero of multiparty democracy Chakufwa Tom Chihana on his courageous coming from exile 25 years ago to  challeng the entrenched Kamuzu Banda’s 31-year-old autocratic rule under the Malawi Congress Party (MCP).

Chakufwa Tom Chihana is a name that is associated with multiparty politics of Malawi

The brave Chihana disembarked from a plane on April 6, 1992 at Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe, flashed his V finger-victory sign to the people that gathered before he was whisked away in a police vehicle for his detention.

This marked the first step of the complicated journey for the fight for democracy, a taboo word in the then one party rule under the iron fist of Kamuzu Banda.

Karonga Central MP Frank Mwenifumbo, who was Chihana’s personal assistant from 1996 to 2004 remembers Chihana as a very brave person who risked his life when he came to Malawi on April 6, 1992 to dismantle the oppressive one party rule and give Malawians the best ever present, democracy.

“He was a democrat at heart,” said Mwenifumbo adding, “he put Malawi and democracy first, everything second.”

Mwenifumbo said Chihana was very much dedicated to issues of democracy and welfare of ordinary poor Malawians.

“This is why he came back to Malawi on this date to face torture, humiliation and death just to bring democracy to freedom to Malawians,” he said.

Chihana was appointed second vice president twice in the Bakili Muluzi administration and Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development minister in the Bingu wa Mutharika administration before Bingu and Chihana fell off.

Asked why his party, the Alliance for Democracy (Aford) nearly came to extinction with 33 members of parliament in 1994 to one MP now, Mwenifumbo said Chihana’s decision to serve in government cost his political party.

“The political movements which he did cost Aford a lot but he had no choice. He wanted to serve the people of Malawi well in government with a minority party.”

Mwenifumbo said Chihana would have loved to see councils tick as he was a firm believer in decentralisation.

The Karonga Central independent legislator also lamented that the state is not taking care of the freedom fighter’s grave in Mzuzu which is now bushy.

Mwenifumbo however said as Malawians remember Chihana, they should not forget those that fought a long with him, including UK based Ahmed Dassu whom he described as Malawi’s unsung hero.

“Ahmed campaigned hard internationally to have Chihana freed from jail. He bankrolled and made personal funding of all democratic projects of the late Chihana. Ahmed worked tirelessly for democracy in this country but behind the scenes. He made Mr Chihana’s job easier,” said Mwenifumbo.

He said Mr Dassu funded Chihana at very difficult time when people were afraid to associate with Chihana and other freedom fighters whom the then Kamuzu Banda regime labelled as dissidents.

There are no state, party or family activities in Malawi to mark the day except for a post on Facebook which Mwenifumbo posted earlier in the day.

Chihana’s son Enock Chihana, who is Aford president and member of Parliament (MP) for Rumphi Central Constituency went quiet on this day.

His party is also in tatters as political commentators say it is “finished”.

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Honest Man

Chihana and his family including Enock were living in poverty after Chihana resigned from Bakili’s government.
It was Dassu who reconciled Chihana with Bakili. At the time Enock was castigating his father as a mad man at UDF rallies.
Enock indeed has destroyed AFORD and the north needs Mwenifumbo to provide leadership. Mwenifumbo is a born leader and no doubt Dassu will help Mwenifumbo as Dassu knows a good leader when he sees one.
Enock go back to your dagga.

Calling a spade a spade
Calling a spade a spade
A Malawi sazatheka. This Mwenifumbo guy is going to pains to add Ahmed to the day Chihana risked his life to return to Malawi. If Banda had killed Chihana on that day and made him meat for crocodiles as he threatened all who opposed him, Dassu would still be living in comfort in the UK going on about his normal life. So where exactly was Dassu’s courage and sacrifice, and why should he be remembered exactly? Was he the only one who supported Chihana? What about the University students? Za zii!! This is what I think is really going on… Read more »
The Truth Pains

Thank you Enock Chihana. Everybody knows that you fear Frank Mwenifumbo because only Frank can revive the Aford you have demolished.
Frank is the leading politician of the north. You are a drunkard and a womaniser.
Dassu is away from your shit. He seeks nothing in political life in Malawi.

Wake up Malawi
Without Chakufwa Chihana, Ahmed Dassu, late Chipeta, Mayinga Mwandawire and their colleagues in AFORD, Bakili Muluzi would still be forging signatures on cheques, Bingu would have died a drunk man instead of as a billionaire and Peter Mutharika would be drinking cheap wine in USA instead of the expensive whiskeys. We Malawians owe a debt of gratitude to these heroes. Sadly Chihana, Chiepeta, Mayinga Mkwandarire are dead, but Dassu is alive. Other than by the great Nyasatimes, our country Malawi has not has not honured Dassu. Why? Is it because he could tell Muluzi on his fact that he was… Read more »
Kamlepo Wakhunyu

Just say northerners were remembering their fellow tumbuka. Don’t say Malawians were remembering bla bla bla. What do I benefit if I remember anybody from the headquarters of nepotism?


I hope the reason given here by Mwenefumbo why AFORD was finished has been heared by UDF. In case they have not: kuthandiza amalawi pogwila ntchito ndi boma. Tiyeni nazoni……


Thanks Mwenefumbo for reminding government why they forget such a hero who subdued the tyrannical rule of Kamuzu.RIP Chakufwa Chihana


Enock cannot be like his dad

Same like ATUPELE cannot be like his dad


This is now Democracy era but people are as cowards as never seen before. Braveness of chihana and the rest of the ministers who didn’t make it but were just as brave to challenge the system…i.e.the chibambos, orton chirwa, chiume, chipemberes, chisizas and Dr banda himself despite his bad record thereafter, its the cream of Malawi we should emulate and copy politically. We are raising a generation of cowards. Poor Africa! poor Malawi


A freedom fighter who campaigned for third term for Muluzi..
A freedom fighter who literally kneeled before Muluzis sister to apologise to Muluzi for having resigned as second vice president…SHAME


may His Soul Rest in Peace

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